Teach Tomorrow… if You First Provide some Useless Info about Yesterday

I heard someone I know is going to start teaching school, and I thought, “hey, I could do that.” 

clip art from cliparthut.com

So I started looking at this Teach for America thing.

At first, it sounded pretty good: teach two years in an area in need. I could totally do that.

So I start the application process.

And they lost me already.


The first thing they want to know about me is my GPA in college- not only the cumulative, but my GPA for each year I was attending. WTF????

Look, I get that it’s important to you that I did OK in school, but I’ve been out of college for over 20 years. What difference does it make what my GPA was each year I was in college? I mean, aside from the fact that I don’t know that information or how to get it, why does that have to be the FIRST thing you have to know about me?

Don’t you want to know my motivation for wanting to teach?

What about all this experience I have in working with people?

Wouldn’t it be a great thing for kids to have somebody like me teaching them. I mean, I’ve been in houses like theirs. I’ve seen the chaos. The poverty. The struggles of people who have faced adversity for years and see no end in sight.

But I don’t know what my GPA was a quarter century ago, so I guess that won’t happen.

Sorry, kids. 


16 thoughts on “Teach Tomorrow… if You First Provide some Useless Info about Yesterday

  1. I always knew life experience was not valued..i know life is all about numbers..maybe the importance should go towards the numbers of highly qualified teachers with super grades who also just happen to be paedophiles..funny that..those numbers keep rising..

  2. I feel for you on this one. I did not get the formal early childhood education, but I have been caring for children for thirty years. I have taken many classes and have had lots of experience. But, I am looked down upon as if I have some dreaded disease. And yet, some of the things I hear from people who have the education just makes me shake my head and wonder if they have ever been around a child lol. Life experience DOES count! Education is important, but it’s not everything.

  3. Something’s not right here. When I was working in HR, we deleted that information from our applications because it was worthless. We weren’t hiring out of college and we were looking for experience which is far more valuable. I can’t believe an organization like this still includes it. I would expect they would get some older people who retired early and would like to contribute. Who remembers their college grades?

    1. I don’t. And my opinion is if that’s the first thing you’re going to ask, you must be full of bureaucratic red tape that I want no part of. I could stay where I’m at and put up with silly rules.

  4. I just saw your Bunky blurg; I am a pug dog devotee; had a lardy one Puggy who is in my books, and who went to lard heaven early from eating too many cookies from my Italian mother-in-law. I gained a few pounds too; but that was long ago; I still miss him. I will jump out of airplanes to see a pug dog!

  5. Teach for America isn’t what is seems. You are better out of that. (Like working in terrible conditions for free while “training”?) Trust me on this one.
    There are other and better avenues. (private teacher training courses/certification programs (some online) – they all cost you money (So did college), but they will get you there and most will assist you getting a paying job.
    You got a college degree – in a field where much should count for edu hours. Contact the state Dept of Edu and find out what exams you must take and what is required for state teaching certification.
    You’d make a good teacher – and still help a lot of kids

  6. I totally agree with you….that is nonsense to give your GPA in college….to them…..We have heard that in US, most company need people who is useful immediately….which means your work experiense in past is important, isn’t it?

  7. I started teaching nearly 40 years ago and as an itinerant in the last 20. I was licensed/certified in four areas, had two degrees, and took all the extra courses above my MEd. simply because I loved learning more about what I could do with and for my kids. I could see what Teach for America is all about. It was about being afraid of people like me. First you have to pay us, and we’ve been around long enough to know you’d better be in a union to protect you so you can do what you get paid not enough to do with as little harassment as possible. Politicians can conveniently blame all the ills of society on teachers for votes and policies from people who haven’t set foot in a school since they were students are made without asking those of us in the trenches. As much as we love kids and teaching, those policies which always involve more testing and data collecting that takes away from teaching time with students is what chases away the vets and discourages potential newcomers. Teach for America was created to combat those of us who know better and get even cheaper work–even free– from new potential people coming into teaching from different fields AND even from different countries. It’s why I know so many Filipino educators–some of whom were duped into being hired and paying high fees while being promised other things that were not fulfilled. Some school systems will hire you if you are working on a teaching degree as long as you are working in the field in which you will get your degree. Some–with universities as well– will allow certain experiences and past courses count towards a degree in a teaching field. There was a program here where paraprofessionals (teachers’ aides) could work on their degrees and the school system would pay for it as long as they used the degrees to move into a teaching position in this school system.

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